Hypermiling: Less fast, Less Gas

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Having only just discovered that my minimalist approach to fuel use has a name, i.e Hypermiling, I was further amazed to find there’s a mass of information, discussion and data online. In fact, it’s mahoosive, less is the new more! Anyway (and as I was asked, … genuinely) these are the strategies that I’d worked out and played with for visiting the pumps less often.
But in order not to bore you, only those who click on ‘continue’ will read an essay exploring useful but dull anorakdom.

1. Mellow Music. I noticed that I drive faster to Rock music and that listening to something mellower (or even a story CD) means I travel at a more civilised pace.
2. Regular oil and air filter change. More efficient burn and less friction
3. Move less weight. Losing random junk from the car means less work for the engine to do.
4. Use the FIRST available car parking space. Arriving in a car park or town, ditch the car at the first opportunity as low speed manouvering and waiting wastes fuel.
5. Where possible, drive at the optimum time. I’m fortunate with my job as i have flexibility, so I leave for work well before rush-hour and hence come back before it. I plan journies to avoid school leaving time etc.
6. 55mph is GREAT, above 3000 rpm is BAD. Nuff said, watch the dials
7. Leave space. The more space between you and the car ahead the less you have to do sudden braking and hence costly re-acceleration.
8. Think way ahead. More chance to keep the car moving.
9. Dodge the wind. If it’s a windy day or if there re lots of lorries coming the other way (they move A LOT of air towards you), hug the inside lane.
10. Tyres. Keep them well inflated.
11. Avoid Stopping if possible. It really sucks gas to move over a ton of metal from a stand still.
12. Accelarate evenly and find 5th fast.
13. Switch off. If you’re not moving then the engine doesn’t need to be turning.
14. See the journey in a different light. If you see the journey as something that must be endured before you can get on with X then you’ll speed. See the journey as part of the activity of the day and you can be more chilled.
But (as Dave Warnock reminded me) I often leave the car at home and cycle. I guess this is ultrahypermiling as I can do 10 miles to one banana or piece of flapjack!

5 Replies to “Hypermiling: Less fast, Less Gas”

  1. Some of these tips I have not seen elsewhere much.
    I like number 7 very much, it is a much better approach than “drafting” which is dangerous and also, yes, wastes gas from extra braking.
    Numbers 8, 9, 11, and 14 are also quite refreshing views.

  2. Right on the mark with # 4! I have seen people say to find a parking place where you don’t have to back out. What’s the point if you have to drive around 15 min to find it??? If you start far enough out, you might find one you can pull through and just take it, but don’t waste your gas looking for one!

  3. For no.3, I find that having an old cavalier, that’s totally unencumbered by modern safety features (airbags, side impact bars, anti roll cage, etc) helps massively 🙂
    Hope you’ve all enjoyed YB.

  4. Huh def need at least 2 pieces of flapjack for 10 miles.
    Love the fact I am a ‘hypermiller’ lol
    Now if I can have a note for the back of my car for when other drivers get annoyed by slow approach to a red light that would be good!

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